June 7, 2007

Wickertís Solid Game Not Enough For Missouri All-Stars

All-star basketball games are supposed to be a stage for top players to relax and have fun. Well tell that to the Illinois and Missouri high school basketball players that clashed at the 24th Annual McDonaldís/Herald Whig Classic at Pepsi Arena on June 9th on the campus of Quincy University in Quincy, IL.

The two teams combined to shoot 77 free throws and even had two technical fouls in one of the most intense all-star competitions in the history of the Classic.

Illinois rallied from a seven-point deficit late in the game to prevail 105-96, marking the 19th straight year the Illinois stars have won and improving the margin to 23-1 all-time.

Scotland County graduate Matt Wickert did his part to help Missouriís upset bid.

Wickert scored eight points and grabbed seven rebounds for the Missouri squad. He made one of the record 12 three pointers by the Show-Me State team.

But in the end it was too much of Brown Countyís Josh Babb. He was named Illinoisí most outstanding player after scoring 24 points to go along with 10 boards.

Hannibalís Brice Scott scored 20 points, including five three pointers to earn the top honors for Missouri.

As a team, Missouri hit on just 29-81 shots. The 35-percent field goal percentage. Wickert shot 50 percent from the field, but got off just four shot attempts.

Quincyís Matt Bush scored 21 points for the Illinois team while Highlandís Curtis Smith had 17 points for Missouri despite 5-15 shooting. Clark Countyís Carrington Daniel had 11 points and 12 rebounds but also had a tough shooting night, making only three of 10 field goal attempts.

Illinois made it a clean sweep with a 75-60 victory in the girls game, ending a three-year stretch on top for the Missouri girls.

Clark Countyís Courtney Shouman grabbed 14 rebounds and poured in 23 points en route to the Missouri MVP honors but it was not enough for the Show-Me State team.

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